Also known as gnus, wildebeests are actually antelopes... 3. Plus, the park is crawling with wildlife; prepare to see lions, cheetahs, leopards, hyenas and more during your visit. They are all lions, cheetahs, tigers, and jaguars. A magnificent Kalahari lion in the Kalahari Desert. If you do go, be sure to take drinking water from home or buy jugs of mineral water outside the park, because the water inside the park isn't safe to drink. With their long necks and specially adapted tongues and lips, they can easily reach up to and eat the succulent, fleshy leaves of the camel thorn… Kalahari Desert Plants. Some of the few plants that grow here are baobab trees (top right picture), acacia trees, cacti, and the camel-thorn tree. Another one of Namibia’s incredible desert-adapted animals is the unique and rare desert-dwelling elephant. It is not to be confused with the Angolan, Namibian, and South African Namib coastal desert, whose name is of Khoekhoegowab origin and means "vast place". There are small amounts of rainfall and the summer temperature is very high. Because the soil and sand of the Kalahari retains water better than normal desert sand, the plant life is thriving in some parts. Found only here and in Mali, these gentle desert giants can be found mostly in the rocky mountains, sandy desert, and stony plains of the Kunene region. Kalahari Desert - Kalahari Desert - People and economy: The Kalahari Desert is inhabited primarily by Bantu speakers and Khoisan-speaking San, with a small number of Europeans. The juice ferments after two days. The Kalahari desert is home to many large animals including Kalahari lions, a subspecies of the African lion,  cheetahs, leopards, hyenas, giraffes, wild dogs, zebras, impalas, baboons, elephants, desert black rhinos and buffalo. Because of this, the animals and plants that have adapted to life here tend to be tough and able to withstand arid conditions. What wildlife can be found in the Kalahari Desert? The Kalahari Desert is a huge swathe of semi-arid land that covers an area of over 350,000 square miles and stretches over vast tracts of three separate African countries – Namibia, Botswana and South Africa.It’s a harsh, waterless land, but a land where some of the most uniquely adapted animals have come to not only survive but to flourish. It occupies almost all of Botswana, the eastern third of Namibia, and the northernmost part of Northern Cape province in South Africa. About Senegal's Wildlife. Animals that live in the region include brown hyenas, lions, meerkats, giraffe, warthogs, jackals and several species of antelope (including the eland, gemsbok, springbok, hartebeest, steenbok, kudu, and duiker), and many species of bird and reptiles. ), meerkats and many types of birds and reptiles. The central Kalahari does have some trees and grasses, and, surprisingly, the northern Kalahari more closely resembles a forest than a desert. Be sure to check out the Witsand Nature Reserve, famous for its "Roaring Dunes." Amphibians, too, live in this dry environment despite their need for water to reproduce. Justine Harrington is a freelance travel journalist (and lifelong wanderer) based in Austin, Texas. There are many reptiles that roam the kalahari desert  .Snakes like the venomous puff adder, as well as tiger snakes and Kalahari purple-glossed snakes can be found in the Kalahari, in addition to between 12 and 18 lizard species, including several species of geckos. In the southwest it merges with the Namib, the coastal desert of Namibia. The Kalahari Desert animals consist of some of the largest animals in the world including the largest cat, the tiger. The other amphibians also live in some parts of Kalahari areas. The desert has over 300 types of animals due to its geographical variations. Wildebeest. She has bachelor's degrees in French and anthropology, and has held nearly every travel-related job imaginable, from study abroad program director in France to ESL educator in Ecuador. The Kalahari is technically a semi-desert, with huge tracts of excellent grazing after good rains, the Kalahari supports more animals and plants than a true desert, such as the Namib Desert to the west. Tsamma Melon. Wildebeest on the move in the Kalahari Desert. This is especially true of Kalahari elephants. The hardiness of the San allowed them to survive their changed fortunes and the harsh conditions of the Kalahari Desert in which they are now mostly concentrated. This blog features information about the Kalahari Desert, as well as a look at the following topics: Desert Plants and Animals, Safaris, Desert Oasis, Accommodation, Kalahari Lodge, Desert Dunes, Africa Hunt Safari, Desert Life, Namib Desert The Bantu-speaking peoples—the Tswana, the Kgalagadi, and the Herero—are relative newcomers to the Kalahari. During summer the temperature is very high and receives 110-200 millimeters of rainfall in the driest areas and 500 millimeters in the wettest areas per year. As semi-desert, with huge tracts of excellent grazing after good rains, the Kalahari supports more animals and plants than a true desert, such as the Namibian Desert to the west. The Kalahari desert is home to many large animals including Kalahari lions, a subspecies of the African lion, cheetahs, leopards, hyenas, giraffes, wild dogs, zebras, impalas, baboons, elephants, desert black rhinos and buffalo. Both animals and Bushmen eat it for the water in its juice, which tastes better if it is cooked. Because the Kalahari Desert is not technically a desert, there are almost 500 species of vegetation that thrive during the rainy season. Create your own unique website with customizable templates. Desert Kalahari, a look at various deserts around Africa. For travelers hoping to spot as much wildlife as possible on a trip to the Kalahari, the best time to go is in May or June after the rains. One of the best-known animals is the meerkat they feed on mainly insects. If you'll be in the southern Kalahari desert, a visit to Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park is a must-do. Tsmamma or Kalahari Desert Melon A relative of the cultivated watermelon, the Tsamma, Citrulus lanatus, can remain firm and fresh for more than two years. It is not a complete desert. Nambia See more about Kalahari Desert Plants and photos! This nocturnal creature is … The plants that do best in the Kalahari's harsh conditions tend to be smaller plants such as grasses or the flowering Devil's Claw, which have tubers or corms that remain underground and enable the plant to flourish when water is available. Note that you should also take strong insect repellent, sunscreen and warm gear if you opt to visit in winter. There are also countless types of rodents, snakes and lizards, in addition to a staggering population of birds. Because the southwestern part of the Kalahari is so dry, there are tons of shrubs, tough grasses and very few trees. … Cracks in the Kalahari’s Emerald: Threats to the Okavango Delta Cracks in the Kalahari’s Emerald: Threats to the Okavango Delta There are many species of plants and animals that call the Okavango Delta their home, but their well-being and the environment itself are being threatened by … Kalahari Desert Plants. Endemic to the Kalahari, the camelthorn is a crucial part of the desert ecosystem, manufacturing nutrients that encourage other plants to grow around its base and providing shade for animals. In the south there are large herds of  wildebeest, hartebeest, springbok and gemsbok. In some areas, larger plants such as the camel thorn and the black thorn -- both species of acacia -- have adapted to the climate. The Best Time to Visit the Kalahari Desert, Plants and Animals of the Kalahari Desert, (Photo: Digital Vision./Digital Vision/Getty Images ), Lonely Planet: The Magical Kalahari Desert, A Travel Guide for the Mojave Desert in California. In the south, on the other hand, there are fewer species than in the north due to an absence of water. Privacy Notice/Your California Privacy Rights. The Kalahari Desert is located in Southern Africa and covers much of Batswana, parts of Namibia and South Africa. The northern part of the Kalahari Desert is home to a rich, diverse selection of animals, including various types of elephants, antelopes, lions, leopards, cheetahs, baboons, hyenas, anteaters … Native Plants & Animals in Nigeria. Kalahari Desert Animals: Brown hyenas, lions, giraffes, warthogs, jackals, several species of antelope (gemsbok, springbok, hartebeest etc. Some, like the African bullfrog, will completely bury themselves below the sand during dry times of the year cand sustain themselves using moisture from their digestive tracts. These are giant, reddish sand dunes that make eerie, music-like sounds when the wind blows, and hearing this is truly a unique experience. In a desert this size, it's no wonder that there are thousands of exciting plant and animal species scattered throughout the region. Animals The Kalahari desert contains many small and large mammals, reptiles, birds, and amphibians. Facts About Kalahari Desert 7: The Origin of Kalahari Came From Tswana Word To find out more, visit www.justineharrington.com. Plants and Animals of the Kalahari Desert (Photo: Digital Vision./Digital Vision/Getty Images ). The leaves of this plant are lobed and abrasive to touch. When Is the Best Time to Travel to Africa? This spiny tree can grow as high as 17 meters, and hence it’s a favorite with giraffes, which are found abundantly in the Kalahari. Large colonies of meerkats are found throughout the Kalahari, where they dig underground burrows for protection from both predators and extreme heat. Some other Kalahari Desert animals include Meerkats, Baboons, Warthogs, Porcupines, Ostriches and domesticated Camels. In the south there are large herds of wildebeest, hartebeest, springbok and gemsbok. The northern part of the Kalahari Desert is home to a rich, diverse selection of animals, including various types of elephants, antelopes, lions, leopards, cheetahs, baboons, hyenas, anteaters and dozens of other species. Predators of the Kalahari get most of their water needs from the body liquids of their prey with some predators also known to feed on the fruits of some plants. It is roughly 900,000 kilometres squared and is considered to be more of a semi-desert as it is scattered with massive tracts of excellent grazing grounds which allow for it to support far more animals and plants than other deserts do, such as the Namib Desert located to the west. African Wild Dog. Other small mammals commonly found in the Kalahari Desert include honey badgers, porcupines, aardvarks, warthogs, anteaters, hares, silver and bat-eared foxes and jackals. The cape pangolin, also known as Temminck's pangolin or the ground pangolin, forages for ants and termites among the red sand of the Kalahari Desert. Also known as citron melon, this plant is endemic to the Kalahari desert. In southern Africa is a unique and gigantic desert, the Kalahari. Cacti thrive in the heat due to their ability to store moisture. Animals Of The Kalahari Desert 1. © 2020 USATODAY, a division of Gannett Satellite Information Network, Inc. It bears single, large yellow flowers. In the 1965 film, Sands of the Kalahari a group of plane crash survivors try to survive in the desert. As the Kalahari is a predominately Waterless Place the only plants able to survive are those adapted to cope with the long months of … In addition to diverse plant life, the Kalahari is home to some of the largest sand dunes on the planet. It is used extensively as food by the tribes living in the desert, and as a source of water because of its high water content. 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